The Slovenia Times

Making Management Education Relevant for the 21st Century


The aim of the study was to understand the missing link between management education and the corporate world in order to develop recommendations to help strengthen the partnerships between management educational institutions and businesses. In interviews with more than 200 CEOs and Human Resource Managers we recognised that the negative demographic trends which impact the recruitment and retention of the best people, the implications of the 4th Industrial Revolution, new competitors in the market and the change in customer needs, are currently the most significant challenges faced by the business sector in the CEE region. These challenges require new leadership styles, reinvented business models and organisational cultures, and employees with cognitive flexibility who are eager to continuously develop and 'unlearn' in order to relearn. Management education has a crucial role in addressing these challenges. Therefore, the main objective of the book is to encourage management educational institutions to start monitoring the needs of their respective stakeholders and to be responsive to those needs by providing relevant management education and research. Following this approach, engagement with the wider world, that is with industry, government and society will be achieved.

Dr Alenka Braček Lalić, Vice Dean for Research and Co-Director of EMBA, IEDC-Bled School of Management, Postgraduate studies


Never before have personality traits been so crucial - openness to change, departure from comfort zones, cooperation with others and changes and upgrading of strategic guidelines. Interdisciplinary skills are the key to understanding different areas such as marketing, controlling and technology, as well as sociological and behavioural patterns. Business schools have a demanding task since a lot of disruption begins with people who leave studies and who do not have a traditional career curve. The ability to adapt schools to these changes and to integrate change agents into the knowledge transfer process will be crucial.

Ranko Jelača, Member of the Management Board, CCO, CMO Telekom Slovenije d. d.


Digitalisation leads the change in organisational structures, launching project work and demanding a more flexible workforce as well as change management and leadership. Established companies struggle to become more agile and they must choose between high and necessary speed and flexibility on the one hand, and the stability inherent in fixed organisational structures and processes on the other. Agile organisations are, in fact, stable and they create more dynamic elements, such as project work and agile methodology in order to be more efficient and flexible, to be able to innovate faster with a shorter time to market, and to guarantee employees more freedom and responsibility.

Vesna Vodopivec, General Manager of HR Management and Organisation Development, NLB


The results of the survey reaffirmed that stability and linearity in the work of managers are gone. Therefore, they must acquire new knowledge on a daily basis and develop the key competencies required by business model disruptions, demographic trends, lack of key personnel, diversity of generations and global corporate transparency. Due to the complexity and speed of change, business education and the economy must be intertwined on a daily basis. If we used to talk about laboratories in science, today it is also crucial for the business environment to have 'laboratories' where managers can master key competencies in real time based on theory and practice.

Aleksander Zalaznik, President of the Managers' Association and Senior Vice President, Danfoss Commercial Controls


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